Cheap Date Show

Cheap Date – September 28 2012 – Taste of Fall!

We’re back at the microphones for a good cause!  Join us as we talk to Meghan Freebeck of Chicago’s Lincoln Park Community Shelter about their Taste of Fall event!

The event takes place on Friday, October 26 and everyone is invited for an evening of great food, great music, and and auction that helps a great cause!

For more information, visit or 773-549-6111.

As always, you can reach us at… don’t be strangers, and neither will we. :)

Total running time: 13:46.


Discover Woodfield #15 – Chefs’ Fest 2011 Preview!

Cheap Date presents another Discover Woodfield show!

It’s time for our annual preview of Chefs’ Fest 2011, presented each year by the Woodfield Chicago Northwest Convention Bureau! ; The event will be held on Wednesday, May 18, 2011 at Arlington Park, and as always, it’s going to be a great event!

Listen to Joe’s interview with Dave Parulo, the President of the Bureau, and hear what’s coming up with the 40 exhibitors for the 18th annual Chef’s Fest!

Comments? Send an e-mail to or visit the Woodfield Chicago Northwest Convention Bureau’s website at

As always, you also send your comments to us at .

Thanks for listening!

This episode’s running time: 11:01.


Cheap Date – 12 March 2011 – Peggy Kinnane’s 10th Anniversary Celebration!

It’s time for another Cheap Date Show, and we’re excited to bring you the details of Peggy Kinnane’s 10th Anniversary Music Festival, which is being held in downtown Arlington Heights on March 17-18-19, 2011!

Join us for our interview with Derek Hanley, owner of Peggy’s, to hear all the detail of this exciting event!

Details on the party can be found at Peggy Kinnane’s web site.

As always, you can reach us at  with your comments and questions! And don’t forget to check into our Facebook page at this link: and follow us on Twitter as “Cheapdate.”

This episode’s running time: 11:31.


Chicago Beer Society Brewpub Shootout 2011

This past Saturday, we attended the Lucky 13th edition of one of our favorite events:  The Chicago Beer Society’s Annual Brewpub Shootout.

It was a wonderful event as always, attended by 300 beer aficionados from all over the USA.  We had a blast with the people at our table, including a couple guys who were actually surprised that Lisa was there of her own volition– and the fact that she actually likes beer.  I guess they never heard our favorite sound bite where Lisa talks about how much she enjoys it. :)

Here are the winners of this year’s Shootout:

1. Haymarket Pub & Brewery
2. Flossmoor Station Restaurant & Brewery
3. Rock Bottom North/South – Lombard & Orland Park

1. Flossmoor Station Restaurant & Brewery
2. Gordon Biersch, Bolingbrook
3. Haymarket Pub & Brewery

1. Revolution Brewing Company
2. Haymarket Pub & Brewery
3. Gordon Biersch, Bolingbrook

You can read more about the event on the Society’s web site (linked above and right here) and you can also view our photos on the Cheap Date Facebook page!

We hope your 2011 started out as well as ours!  Talk to you soon!

Cheap Date – 28 June 2010 – Biggby Coffee

 We’re pleased to be back and even more pleased to bring you the tale of an Arlington Heights favorite that has returned!

Listen to our review of Biggby Coffee and our interview with owner Tim Mickelson.  We’re sure you’ll enjoy this one!

We love hearing from you– if you’d like to tell us about your dining experiences (or anything else that’s on your mind) please write to us at . You can also join our Facebook page at this link, and follow us on Twitter as “cheapdate.”

This episode’s running time: 21:09.

Baja Fresh Closed in Illinois

This past Saturday (May 1) we visited our local Baja Fresh restaurant in Rolling Meadows, only to find the signage had been changed to read “Pacifica Mexican Grill.”

When we asked the guy at the register what was going on, he indicated that the name had changed that day, and that was about all the information he had. We got the impression that he was probably just as surprised as we were. The Pacifica Mexican Grill menu is basically the same, albeit stripped down a bit. All the “Baja Fresh” trappings– cups, plates, etc.– were replaced with generic ones.

None of the media outlets covered this, and no press release was issued by Baja Fresh. We noticed several other people complaining about the stores in their areas suddenly closing, so I wrote to Baja Fresh and got this response:

Thank you for taking the time to contact Baja Fresh. The Baja Fresh restaurants you are inquiring about are no longer members of our franchise community. At Baja Fresh we take guest satisfaction very seriously, and unfortunately there were a number of operational and financial issues that led us to terminate our relationship with our Illinois franchisee and close all Baja Fresh restaurants in the Illinois Market. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused our loyal Baja Fresh Customers. There are no immediate plans to open another restaurant in this area; however Baja Fresh currently has 254 restaurants in 20 states and is continuously growing in its number of locations.

It looks like another good fast-food alternative is gone.

Discover Woodfield #13 – Chefs’ Fest 2010 Preview

Enjoy this episode of Discover Woodfield!

Listen to our preview of Chefs’ Fest 2010, presented by the Woodfield Chicago Northwest Convention Bureau! The event will be held on May 11, 2010 at Arlington Park Racecourse, and it promises to be a great time for all!

On this show, Joe interviews Dave Parulo, the Bureau’s Director of Membership and Community Outreach. Join the guys as they talk about what to expect at this favorite event, the 17th annual presentation of the area’s premier restaurant and hospitality show. We expect nearly 70 exhibitors this year!

Comments? Send an e-mail to or visit the Woodfield Chicago Northwest Convention Bureau’s website at

This episode’s running time: 22:14.

Cheap Date – 7 February 2010 – Chicago Beer Society

Welcome back to the Cheap Date Show!

This time around we’re visiting with some officers of the Chicago Beer Society, and we talk about this year’s Twelfth Annual Chicagoland Brewpub Shootout, one of our favorite events of the year.

Keep that feedback coming! Write us at  You can also follow us on Twitter where we post as “cheapdate,” and if you’re so inclined you can join our Facebook Fan Page by clicking here.

Thanks again for listening!

“Send Me No Wine” is by The Moody Blues, and “Love” is by The Dream Academy.

This episode’s running time: 32:23.

Cheap Date – 26 December 2009 – Happy Holidays!

We’re back to wish you a happy and healthy Holiday Season!!

Joining us this time around is Joe’s daughter Becca, who shares her thoughts on two of her favorite spots around the Chicago suburbs: Charles Romano’s in Des Plaines, and Chef Ping in Rolling Meadows.

We also mention our beer-expert friend Chris’ recent trip to Italy, and you can read his report by clicking here. You’ll be thirsty after reading it! And speaking of beer, we also talk about the upcoming 2010 Brewpub Shootout, sponsored by the Chicago Beer Society.

Thanks for all the emails and voice mails– we love hearing from and corresponding with you! You can drop us a line at  And you can follow us on Twitter where we post updates as “cheapdate.”

Thanks again for listening, and here’s wishing you all the best for 2010!!

“Not So Silent Night” is by Charlie Crowe.

This episode’s running time: 17:01.

Cheap Date / Discover Woodfield – 25 April 2009 – Chef’s Fest 2009

It’s our annual Chef’s Fest show!

Join us for this year’s event at the Arlington International Racecourse, where we sampled many of the offerings from the 60 exhibitors who were present! Special guests Liz and Bob and Becca and Emma joined us for the festivities.

We’re presenting this as a Discover Woodfield show—if you’d like to hear more shows like this, drop by

Some of the places we mention:

Lynfred Winery

Fox & Hounds

McCormick & Schmick’s

Birch River Grill

Sweet Baby Ray’s



Bob Chinn’s

Francesca’s Tavola


Spring Valley Nature Sanctuary

The Grand Station

John Barleycorn

The Meadows Club

Weber Grill

Morton’s Steak House


Uno Chicago Grill

Lou Malnati’s

L’Eiffel Bistrot & Creperie


Fuego Mexican Grill

Kendall Kelly Lewis Quartet

The Arlingtones

Big Shot Piano Lounge

Thanks again for the fine people at the Woodfield Chicago Northwest Convention Bureau for their hospitality and for putting together such a wonderful event!

We love your feedback, so please drop us a note at and let us know what’s on your mind!

This episode’s running time: 15:35.